Creating a movie with Windows Live Movie Maker
Video: Creating a movie with Windows Live Movie MakerIt's time now to take a look at one of my favorite programs that's part of the Windows Live Essentials' bundle of programs and that's Windows Live Movie Maker. If you want to throw together your photos, video, even music and create cool looking videos to share with others, this is a simple application to use and it will help you do all of that. Now Windows Movie Maker has been around for quite some time but here in Windows Live Essentials, in Windows 7, it's newly designed. It's got a fresh new look, so let's take a peek now. We are going to be using the contents of the 12_11 sub-folder of the Chap12 folder of the Exercise Files.
- Exploring changes to the UI
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In Windows 7 Essential Training, David Rivers helps users of any level feel comfortable with the improvements and enhancements found in Microsoft's operating system. From simple navigation through the updated graphic user interface, David shows how to install or upgrade and get the most out of Windows 7. He covers using the new Internet Explorer 8 and boosting a computer's memory with the ReadyBoost tool. He also highlights hardware configuration options and explores the advances made connecting a home or work system with Windows Live, the cloud-computing environment made available for Windows 7 users. Exercise files accompany this course.
- Running Windows XP programs within a Windows 7 installation Accessing favorites quickly through jump lists Establishing user settings through Windows Explorer Setting up a home network with Homegroup Displaying similar sites with suggestions in Internet Explorer 8 Syncing photos on two computers with Live Sync
Creating a movie with Windows Live Movie Maker
It's time now to take a look at one of my favorite programs that's part of the Windows Live Essentials' bundle of programs and that's Windows Live Movie Maker. If you want to throw together your photos, video, even music and create cool looking videos to share with others, this is a simple application to use and it will help you do all of that. Now Windows Movie Maker has been around for quite some time but here in Windows Live Essentials, in Windows 7, it's newly designed. It's got a fresh new look, so let's take a peek now. We are going to be using the contents of the 12_11 sub-folder of the Chap12 folder of the Exercise Files.
We have got some photos, we have got a video, even a song here that we can use as we create our video. If you have got your own and you want to try this out, that's fine. If you have got the Exercise Files, you can follow along with me by going down to the Windows orb, selecting All Programs, then Windows Live, and of course when you install it or download Windows Live Essentials, you got to have to make sure that Movie Maker was one of the programs that was being installed. And when you select it here, we see that fresh, new, simple looking user interface, broken up into three main areas really.
I have got the Ribbon across the top with all of our commands, and you can see there are different tabs here. We have our Preview screen where we will be able to see what's going on as we create it and over here on the right- hand side, an area for dragging in content, videos, and photos, for example. And we can just drag them in here from a folder, or if you would prefer you can click to browse for them, so it's totally up to you how you do to this. I like to have it filling my entire screen, so instead of going to Windows Explorer, moving this around and trying to drag things in, I prefer just to browse for them from this window.
So I am going to close up Windows Explorer. And before I even start dragging in content, I am going to go up here and make sure the Home tab is selected. If you have got a video camera or a camera and you want to be able to add video from that, in other words you need to import the content, you are going to go just left of the Home tab here and you are going to click the Application button, and here you will notice you have the ability to import from a device. Of course, you would have the plug-in the device. If it's a video camera, you plug it in probably with a USB cable.
And to begin making a movie with Windows Live Movie Maker, you will select your photos and videos that you would want to use. You don't need to see this message every time, click OK and off you go. Now, if your camera is plugged in, it's going to be recognized here. You'll see the device. If you simply select it and then whatever you do on your camera you will actually see in the Preview screen here. You can import with the Import button. We've already got all of our content, so in that case we are going to go back to our Home tab here on the Ribbon and start to add videos and photos from here.
Something called AutoMovie is really cool. Once you have got your content, you can have Movie Maker create the movie for you. And what it's going to do is automatically create a title. Let's go to Title here, and click. This allows us to add a title. You can see the content was added. We get to enter our text now. Let's just type in something like California Cool. I am going to hit Return, by D. Rivers. There we go. Now this is the default formatting, we got a black background, we have got white text, but all of this stuff can be changed.
You will notice as soon as we started typing, we got our Format tab selected on the Ribbon. We have got Text tools and Video tools to choose from. Right now we're looking at the Text tools. You can see the color-coded border around the outside of the Ribbon. So for example, if I want to make this little bit bigger, I could do that right from here. If I want to change the font to something else, go ahead and change the font. If you want to add some attributes, change the font size, center, left, or right, add transparency, even go inside to edit the text, which we are already inside editing, if we wanted to make changes, no problem.
Let's just change the background color, we will click the Background color and choose a nice dark blue. And for the text itself, the text color, we can go to this button and let's choose bright yellow, there we go. We can also choose the duration, so how much time are we going to be looking at this title. I can see the duration is set to 5 seconds, but we can change that. Let's just shorten it to 2 seconds for the sake of this movie. I will just click in the screen in the background, so you can see your text. Click again and you will notice that nothing seems to be appearing here.
But if we click the Play button, you are going see the default effect that was applied here. So you can play that back at any time just to preview it. And if you want to change that effect, you can, no problem. So we can't see it right now, we will just go back to the beginning and you could see we have got this slider here as well. Here it is. There is our text. Click anywhere on the text itself and choose a different effect if you want. As you hover over these effects you are going to see what actually happens here. I like this one here. Zoom in if you want to see more.
Click the little dropdown. We have lots to choose from here, maybe that one, Spin in. Let's use that. We have also got this bar that we can move across back and forth to preview what's going on as well. Okay. Let's get some more stuff in here. Let's add some video and photos. And we click this button, here we go, we can start browsing. We will go to the 12_11 sub-folder of Chap12. If we just want to bring all of this stuff in, let's bring all the photos in, click the first one, hold down Shift, click the last one and let's just leave this video out of the picture.
Hold down Ctrl while you click that to deselect it. When you click Open, you can see everything got added, and that's the same order that they appeared in our folder. We can change the order up. Now they are all selected right now, so there's nothing to move. So you need to deselect and just click one, for example. Notice the border around the outside. Now you can move it. When you let go, it's dropped in place. I am going to move the otters over here. There we go. So you can move a group or you can move individual images.
In this case we are using photos. So you can choose how you want them to appear and in the right order. Let's bring in that video now. We will go to Add Videos and Photos again, but this time we just want the video. This way we get to pick its location or maybe we just import it. It's automatically added to the end and you can see how it's broken up. You can also see the duration when you hover over. It's 40 seconds worth. I am going to move that just up here before the Rocks, so you can see now it wraps around onto the second line.
And with video you have a number of different options to choose from. With this frame selected, you'll notice up at the top, we have got Video tools. So we can do things like let's go down to Edit, have it fade in and out. I like this. The Trim tool allows us to trim the video, any unwanted parts that we don't need. So to really see where we want it to start, for example, we can click and drag this border over. And I actually don't want any of this right here, so I am going to leave it right there at the end.
I am going to split it. When I do that now, it's like I have got two videos. In this one, I am going to select it and press Delete on my keyboard. It's gone. Now the video starts here. As I scroll over, you can see that's good, I like that. All right, I am going to split again and I am going to move across all the way to there and I am going to split. Now I have got it split into three and this little section here I don't want. Trimming. You are going to use just for your start and end points.
So for example, if I drag this across, maybe right there is where I want it to end. I am going to set that as my endpoint and you can see it's really gotten shortened up here. So as I hover over this little clip, you can see it's 6 seconds. It's trimmed. It also tells me that this one is 8. All right so, now we have got all of that in. Let's add some credits at the end. Go back to the Home tab and we will add some credits. You can see they get added to the end. Enter name here. I am actually going to type in a bunch of words here. Created by David Rivers.
You can type in your own information. Again, we have got all of our Text tools here as well as effects if you want. By default, it's going to scroll up. And we can change the duration here. I am going to bump it up to about 8 seconds, and now I've got everything I need. The only thing missing might be some cool transitions in between. So if I select the first frame, hold down Shift and click the last frame, which is my Credits. I have got all of them selected again. And now, let's go up to Animations and you will see Transitions here.
As we hover over these, we see a preview happen. Some cool transitions. We also have some pan and zoom options. So if you want your images to be panned across, for example, going from left to right, right to left, you got a whole bunch to choose from. It's almost as if the still pictures are moving. So I am going to choose one of these. Let's go down to Zoom in top. Remember everything is selected, so it's being applied to everything and let's choose a cool transition here. Choose the Diagonal - box out.
You can also choose the duration for these things, how long it takes for the transition to start and end. In this case, a second, and that's going to affect the entire length of our video. And you can see the total length here is 53 seconds. Back to the Home tab. Now this is cool, we can add some music to this. Our video actually has some sound, so if I click the video clip, hold down Shift and click the second one, I want these both selected. I might not want to hear any of the audio here, so I need to access those options.
And you can see under Video tools, I have got Edit, or the Edit tab. I will go to Video volume. I am going to drag this slider all the way to the left, which is the equivalent of muting it. Okay, perfect. Now we will go back to the Home tab and add music. When we click Add music, it could be at the current point or just add it to the entire movie. I want to add it to the entire movie. I am going to go back to my 12_11 sub-folder of the Chap12 folder in the Exercise Files, and I've got an MP3 song in there, FinalSong. Click Open, and you can see it gets added, beautiful.
And I have got some options. Music tools for example. If I go down to Options, I can fade the music in, but I want it to fade out slowly, there we go. We can also adjust the volume for our music. I am going to just bring it down a little bit. Now you can see the music track across the top here. It's actually over 3 minutes long, so I don't have enough content to fill up the entire song and it gets cut off at the end. And that's why fading out is a good idea. Another option though might be to have it automatically fit.
Let's go to the Home tab. I kind of like this feature. When you click Fit to music, automatically your photos and your video are going to be stretched out so it fits the length of the music, and you can see everything just got stretched out. It's as if we added duplicates of all of our photos and that's actually going to fit the entire song. The new length of my movie is 3 minutes and 6 seconds. I can press play just to take a peek at what that's going to look like. (Music playing.) I will just press Pause right there.
So once you have assembled all of this, and by the way clicking AutoMovie would have done everything we just did: added the titles, the credits, the effects in between, the panning and zooming that we added. And it would have, with our song, made everything fit to the music. We just did it all manually, but you know what? It was a lot more fun having full control. If you are in a rush though, AutoMovie is a great option. Now it's time to save this up, so let's just click the Save button and I am going to save it to my Desktop. It's called My Movie by default.
You can call it whatever you want. I am going to type in CaliCool, and notice this is going to be saved as a Movie Maker Project. So when you click Save, you just go back to your project any time you want to make adjustments. When you're ready to share though, you have got some sharing options. I am going to click this little dropdown to see them all. YouTube is an option. It will publish right to your YouTube account and then you can see we have got some common settings, high-definition settings, or in this case we can burn to a DVD, and we have got these other options down below.
If you have a portable device like a mobile phone or if you want to send it via e-mail, you can do that from here as well. Also if we go up to the Application button, you can see we've got the Save movie. We have got these options here and you can choose different definitions. We have also got Publish movie, and there is our YouTube option from here. So it's totally up to you how you want to save it. I am going to choose Save. I am going to click Widescreen. And in this case, it's going to be saved as a Windows Media video. That's my only option when I choose Widescreen.
It's going to have the same name. I am going to click Save and now I've got that option as well. Now when we actually publish or save to a format that we can use to play the movie, not just a project, it could take a while depending on how much video and how many photographs are in there, the music, etc. So you can see with Windows Live Movie Maker, I have got the progress bar going across. At the end, I will be able to play this movie. So let's let this complete and then we'll take a look at the finished product. All right. It's done. We see this little message here.
So our movie called CaliCool, WMV format is complete. So we have the ability now, if I want to go and play that, click the Play button. You can see it's opening up here in Windows Media Player. (Music playing.) I am just going to bring the volume down and you can see the progress bar in the Media Player here moving across. You can see that slight pan and zoom, the moving in, one of the special effects. And when we move from one photo to the next photo, we are going to see that transition effect as well, there it is, and some more panning and zooming.
Of course, everything got stretched out so it could fit this song and that's why it's moving so slowly. But we've got a finished product and it took us literally minutes to throw our photos, video, and music together. I am going to close this up and I am going to close up Movie Maker. I have saved the project. There is my file right there on the Desktop any time I need to play it. So keep in mind, there is a newly redesigned Movie Maker built in to Windows Live Essentials. It makes it really easy for sharing video that you create based on photos, video, even music.
Windows Live Movie Maker.
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- Q: Is there a way to share files and printers between computers on network running Windows XP and Windows 7 without using the HomeGroup share method of Windows 7, since XP does not have this feature?
- A: While Windows XP does not support the new HomeGroup found in Windows 7, there is another way to share files and printers between the two operating systems. There are a number of steps to follow, but they are all listed here: www.howtogeek.com/howto/windows-7/share-files-and-printers-between-windows-7-and-xp/
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- A: Unfortunately, only Windows 7 supports HomeGroup. If the Windows XP computer must connect with the Windows 7 computer, there are have two options:
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2. Change the Windows 7 HomeGroup to a regular Workgroup and the XP machine will be able to connect to it.
Here are the steps to changing a HomeGroup to a Workgroup:
- On the Windows 7 computer, click the Start button at the bottom left of the screen.
- Go to the Control Panel and choose Network and Sharing Center.
- Click the link for "View your active networks.”
- In the next window choose "Work network." That will switch the group from a HomeGroup to a Workgroup so the two computers can talk to each other. However, the same workgroup name and share folders in Explorer must be assigned to both computers before they can be networked.
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